Susan Gerofsky is an assistant professor with the Department of Curriculum and Pedagogy.
How did you get into biking to work?
I've been cycling to work and school most of my life, from high school on. I've always loved bicycle touring, too. Although I learned to drive at age 16, I've only driven a car for one year of my life, in the mid- '80s, when my Dad gave us his huge, gas-guzzling 1973 Oldsmobile. Even though I did most of the repairs myself in an auto shop night class, the car was expensive, and driving made me miserable. I was very happy to get rid of it and get back on my bike!.
What’s the most important tip you would you give to someone who is new to bike commuting?
Customize the experience to make it really fun and enjoyable for you. Find a bike that you feel good with and then accessorize it. (I like good waterproof panniers, a front basket, convenient lights, some touches of colour, and especially those amazingly comfortable leather handlebar grips.) Wear the clothes that please you. (I switched from wearing specialized bike gear to dresses and boots, but I always wear a helmet and bike gloves.) Make the experience your own!
What fuels you to bike?
Getting outdoors everyday near the forest and the sea. Getting some exercise that is invigorating and meditative as part of my normal day. Observing what's new in the weather and the city, and often meeting friends unexpectedly on the bike path. Biking is so enjoyable...it's like being able to fly!
Multiple Choice: Which one of these is the most challenging for you? A) the hill B) the rain C) the sweat or D) the distance? E) other____
A) Going up the hill to UBC is the biggest challenge. I live 18 km east of campus, so the distance is long, but not hard..
How do you conquer this challenge?
I love the fact that we can now do multimodal travel, combining biking with bus and Skytrain rides. So I usually avoid riding up the big hill at the end of my 18 km -- I hop a bus to the top. Depending on my schedule and the weather, I might bus more than halfway to avoid getting soaked in the rain, and then ride all the way home...any combination that works! It's always better to bike, even on days when I only go partway.
Join your colleagues on the road and register for Bike to Work (& School) Week now.